An Unauthorized Use of Ms. Gunnison's Secret Time Machine

Gunni told her not to touch it;
Common sense would say as much in
Plainer words, for these devices
Warrant care if not a license,
Just to view the glowing screen
Of the forbidden time machine.

It's meant for research that's historical,
Not for making oneself an oracle,
Not for giving Voltaire a tease,
Or climbing up Pangaean trees.

But Laura had a burden
In this timeline's normal version,
So she made her own incursion
To years the burden had occurred in.
No one knows just what she did,
Or how the timeline handled it,
Or how things were supposed to go
If Laura had not changed the flow.

And as we gathered in her mansion,
And I checked my gift poem's scansion,
I had to wonder why she will not tell
Why her investments have gone so well,
Or why all her enemies have come down with
Fatal but late-to-manifest genetic diseases,
Like Huntington's chorea.
I dismissed my concerns and raised my drink
To sing: Happy birthday—or so we think.

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